Author Topic: Add: Arise! Arise!


Posted - 06 Sep 02 - 11:27 pm

Arise! Arise!
Arise, arise, you slumbering sleeper
Arise, arise, 'tis almost day
Go open your doors, your doors and windows
And hear what your true love doth say

Oh who is this that knocks at my window
That speaks my name so familiarly?
'Tis James, 'tis James, your own true lover
That wants to speak one word to thee

Go away from my window, you'll waken my father
He's lying now a-taking his rest
And in his hand he holds a weapon
To kill the one that my heart loves best

Go away from my window, you'll waken my mother
Such tales of love she scorns to hear
You'd better go court, go court some other
She kindly whispered in my ear

I won't go court, go court some other
By what I say I mean no harm
I want to win you from your mother
A rest you in a true love's arms

O down in yon valley there grows a green willow
I wish it were across my breast
It might cut off all grief and sorrow
And set my troubled mind at rest

Source: 80 English Folk Songs - Collected by Cecil Sharp and Maud Karpeles

Sung by Mr Alex S. Coffey at White Rock, Virginia.

The text is as sung by Mr Napoleon Fitzgerald at Beechgrove, Virginia to an almost identical tune.

There are four versions at the Max Hunter Collection:

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Mrs. Oliva Hauser, Fayettville, Arkansas on June 21, 1958

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Wise Jones, Fayetteville, Arkansas on March 25, 1958

Wake Up, Wake Up, You Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Olivia Hauser, Fayetteville, Arkansas on July 5, 1960

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Ollie Gilbert, Mountain View, Arkansas on June 25, 1969

The Traditional Ballad Index entry can be found here

Database entry is here


Posted - 06 Sep 02 - 11:30 pm

Some comments from Malcolm (copied from this thread)

This is a widespread song group with distinct narrative strands, ranging from a straightforward night-visiting song with an unsuccessful outcome to a full-blown tragedy in which one or more of the principals dies.
Several sets were published as Arise Arise; mostly by Sharp. Drowsy Sleeper is a more common title, but there are many others, including Who is at My Window Weeping, Awake Awake and I Will Set My Ship in Order.

Roud 402 Laws M4

Mary in Kentucky

Posted - 07 Sep 02 - 01:20 am

Ed, thanks for all your work. I'm really enjoying these.

I noticed that the version here is Dorian (starts on E with a D signature BUT also has a few D's in the melody).

The first one at the Max Hunter collection is a beautiful Dorian (starts on Ab with a Gb signature AND avoids all Gb's in the melody). But the surprising thing (to my ear) is the F in the melody. I think it belongs in the Dorian, but sounds unusual for some reason.

Then the second one at the Max Hunter collection appears to be a straight A minor. Is this common for older versions to follow a Dorian mode, then become minor with time?


Posted - 10 Sep 02 - 08:09 pm


You seem to be suggesting that a tune is more Dorian, if it doesn't include the 7th note. Not quite sure what you mean?

F is certainly part of an Ab Dorian (the 6th)

As far as modal tunes becoming major/minor over time, I know far too little about the subject to give an informative answer.

However, it does seem a distinct possibility. In the introduction to The Penguin Book of English Folk Songs, it is commented that "perhaps under the influence of modern convention, a singer has weakened certain phrases of a fine modal tune"


Malcolm Douglas
Posted - 10 Sep 02 - 09:39 pm

There are several broadside examples at  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads:

The drowsy sleeper  Printed c.1817 by J. Crome of Sheffield. Harding B 28(233).

The maidens complaint  Printed between 1828 and 1829 by T. Birt, 10, Great St. Andrew-Street, Seven Dials, London.

Awake, drowsy sleeper  Printed between 1863 and 1885 by H. Such, 177, Union street, Boro.' S.E. Printer's Series: (555). Firth c.17(25): one of two copies.

Cruel father or The maiden's complaint  Printed between 1819 and 1844 by J. Pitts, 6, Great st Andrew street, 7 Dials [London]. Harding B 25(452).

The full title of the book mentioned above is Eighty English Folk Songs from the Southern Appalachians, ed. Maud Karpeles. It was first published in 1968.


Posted - 10 Sep 02 - 09:53 pm

Thanks Malcolm.

I gave the title of the book as printed on the cover.

I'll alter the submissions I've made from it, accordingly.


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